Urinary retention is one of the most common early postoperative complications following inguinal hernia repair (IHR). The aim of this study was to assess the incidence of postoperative urinary retention (POUR) and to identify associated risk factors.
Data of consecutive patients undergoing IHR from 2011 to 2017 were collected from a national multicenter cohort. POUR was defined as the inability to void requiring urinary catheterization. A multivariate analysis was conducted to identify independent risk factors for POUR.
Of 13,736 patients, 109 (0.8%) developed POUR. Patients with POUR had longer hospital length of stay (p < 0.001). IHR was performed by a laparoscopic or an open approach in 7012 (51.3%) and 6655 (48.7%) patients, respectively, and spinal anesthesia was realized in 591 (4.3%) patients. Ambulatory surgery was performed in 10,466 (76.6%) patients. Multivariate analysis identified preoperative dysuria (0R 3.73, p < 0.001), diabetes mellitus (OR 1.98, p = 0.029) and spinal anesthesia (OR 7.56, p < 0.001) as independent preoperative risk factors associated with POUR. POUR was the cause of ambulatory failure in 35 (10.2%) patients who required unanticipated admission.
The incidence of POUR following IHR remains low but impacts hospitalization settings. Preoperative risk factors for POUR should be considered for the choice of the anesthetic technique.